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First post, by Shreddoc

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How often are you, say, getting a new bit(s) from ebay-or-wherever? Three times per week? Six times per year? Thrice per decade? Even perhaps (gasp!), somewhere in between those...??

I'm curious to see an informal cross-section of the scene's purchasing habits.

It's novel to see how some enthusiasts barely seem to go a single day without posting about another gear acquisition. While my own retro gear buying experience is limited to, at most, a handful of carefully-chosen occasions per year. Quite different approaches. (each perfectly valid and fine!, I must add)

And how do you do it? how often?

Reply 1 of 15, by Shponglefan

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It varies. I'll tend to buy things in chunks, usually if I have specific projects I want to work on. So I might be buying things daily for a short period, then go over a year without buying anything.

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Reply 2 of 15, by davidrg

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Rarely these days and most of what I do buy is just new bits to repair existing hardware (battery replacements, CF-IDE adapters, etc). I've got a pretty good supply of the common parts - challenge is finding bits when I need them (I have absolutely no idea where my box of VLB cards has ended up) and finding enough space to keep it all. There is stuff I'd like to buy, specific machines or specific bits of hardware, but its mostly stuff that is hard to source locally and too expensive to get from eBay.

Reply 4 of 15, by kixs

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I used to buy at least few items per week. Sometimes even hoarded so much to fill my entire car space - good, exciting times those were 🤣

But now maybe a few items per month. As I pretty much have all I can 🤣

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Reply 5 of 15, by schmatzler

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At least one item per month, usually something small or a good deal from eBay - like the broken Radeon X850 I got for cheap.

Bigger, more expensive stuff maybe every 4 - 6 months. I've got most of the stuff I really wanted already.

Reply 6 of 15, by HanSolo

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During the last years it was between 5 and 10 purchases per month which includes everything, hardware and software on all systems. In the beginning one purchase was often a bundle of several individual items (e.g. a complete C64 package), later that came down to 1-2 items of PC stuff per transaction.

Meanwhile I have pretty much all I wanted so I don't buy that much anymore. (At least that's what I hope. February brought again 11 transactions, but April it still at 0 😀 )

Reply 7 of 15, by cyclone3d

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Used to be a lot more but now I only buy stuff I have been looking for specifically or if something pops up for a really good price that I know I can sell for more later if I don't end up using it.

Sometimes I go for weeks without buying anything. The list of what still I want for projects is getting to be less and less so purchases have slowed down.

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Reply 8 of 15, by Sombrero

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I guess I'm a lousy retro enthusiast as I only buy stuff I need straight away or as backup, and I don't really need much. I'm currently downgrading my sandy bridge based Windows XP PC to cedar mill Pentum 4 so I did recently buy a bunch of stuff, as long they work I wouldn't be surprised if I wouldn't buy much at all for months to come.

Last edited by Sombrero on 2022-04-05, 05:41. Edited 1 time in total.

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Reply 9 of 15, by RandomStranger

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Once or twice a month. Mostly convenience stuff unless I find something for a very good price. For a time now I'm considering downsizing my collection only leaving a couple of PCs with one or two spares from the main components.

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Reply 10 of 15, by foil_fresh

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once or twice a month, sometimes less if i feel like ive gone over my imaginary budget. i make exceptions for local facebook marketplace sales - if i see something too cheap to pass up then i make an enquiry and hope nobody else has snatched it up. im happy to go for a drive to get a bargain.

Reply 11 of 15, by darry

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When I need it, when I can find it, and when (if) I can afford it (imagine a Venn diagram) . 😉

More seriously, I have pretty much everything retro I ever really wanted and/or needed, so I mostly splurge on occasional local, cheap and lucky impulse buys (at flea markets, garage sales, etc)

Reply 12 of 15, by shamino

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Every once in a while I start digging into eBay, maybe just out of boredom, but if I keep it up I will inevitably find something that I want to buy. This leads to more searching and more buying. Then after I think I've spent too much I stop. It happens a few times a year.

Reply 13 of 15, by chinny22

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I only actively purchased 3 retro rigs.

First was a Dell P3 off gumtree when I wanted to play Need for speed and begun this hobby
Parts for a "ultimate" Win9x build, when still new in the hobby and ended up hardly using
upgrading a LGA775 based PC to make a "almost ultimate XP build"

Rest of my retro fleet is computers I come across by chance which kicks off a bit of a spending spree on what's needed to upgrade what I want.
I will have limits though so have ebay searches saved for the more expensive parts so projects may take a few years to complete, That "ultimate" 9x build took 2-3 years all up

Reply 14 of 15, by AppleSauce

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I usually get something every few weeks but I've been winding down since I'm nearly done with my 2 builds(Dos pc and Win98 pc).
There's only like 2 components I need for my pentium 1 based dos pc which are readily available at serdashop, the only other few extra items are things like cables and fans.
I've pretty much got all the pricey expansion cards and midi synths ill need.

Reply 15 of 15, by KCompRoom2000

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Not very often anymore. I usually only buy hardware when I find that I need it for something, the last thing I bought was a graphics card for my Tualatin rig since its old card was constantly overheating, that was over a month ago. Prior to that, it was some stuff I bought at RE-PC last July.

I remember buying retro hardware once every month or so when I joined this forum, this was 5 years ago when I got my own debit card and an eBay account. There were a lot of projects I had on the back burner prior to that because I didn't have enough money to buy certain parts to complete them, so that was what motivated me the most at that time.